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Fake News Technology

Singapore government organisation apologises for saying satire was a type of fake news


By Charlotte McEleny, Asia Editor

September 9, 2019 | 4 min read

Singapore government organisation, Media Literacy Council, came under fire over the weekend for posting an infographic under a Facebook post that classed satire as a type of fake news.

Singapore fake news

Singapore government organisation apologises for saying satire was a type of fake news

The organisation is in charge of keeping people safe online within a media context, and recently launched its ‘Better Internet Campaign’ for 2019. The campaign focuses on the idea that with one click, you can help create a better internet, avoiding bullying, shaming and scams.

The post, aimed at young people, intended to show that fake news can take different forms and listed fake content, imposter content, manipulated content, misleading content, clickbait and satire.

The organisation has now taken to Facebook to apologise:

However, many netizens are still angry that a government organisation was spreading its own version of fake news.

One commenter on Facebook, said: “I am disappointed at your suggestion that you merely gave the wrong impression - when you made a false statement. Your mistake - which I hope was an honest one - only confirms fears that satire will be seen as fake news - wittingly or unwittingly. If the MLC does not know the law well enough, how can it presume to educate others on it? What is worse is that despite making a mistake, you chose to explain it away as referring to the context in which fake news can appear, that is, in click-bait and satirical articles. The fact is, false statements can be made even in reputable articles, or anywhere. It's actually more believable if it's written seriously. Instead of admitting the mistake (which Pofma would require), you chose to wave this away as a wrong impression. This is NOT good for your credibility.”

Singapore has taken an active role in combatting fake news, amending its laws to better protect against fake news earlier this year.

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